'Til the butter melts

Pursuing the cruising dream in 32' of sailing ketch

Cruising and Social Responsibility


What with the spreading Covid-19 pandemic and the concerns for both our health and that of the populous in general, we’ve been giving a fair bit of thought to our rather unique (to a small group) circumstances.

The guidelines for “flattening the curve” of the outbreak include eliminating all avoidable travel – but what do you do when your home is a traveling device, and the only way to get to your other “home” – a house in Maine – is to travel? Is that travel avoidable? Or not?

Certainly we’ve taken the social distancing and hygiene guidelines to heart. We cancelled all our planned and long anticipated visiting in St. Augustine, and except for a couple of brief outdoor’s forays ashore we stayed isolated on the boat, contacting others only to the minimum extent necessary to service the boat, provision, and get out of town.

But is that enough? Could we do better?

I don’t think we could do better. By staying aboard and continuing our travels, I think we’re obeying the spirit of the guidelines to the fullest, perhaps having even less significant contact with others than we could if we were in “lockdown” at the house in Maine.

There are still some question marks ahead, though. We do need to stop at a marina – or at least at a dock – every 4-5 weeks, just to fill the water tanks, buy diesel fuel, and restock the cupboards. Is that different than what we’d be doing from a land base? We don’t think so – and we have the advantage here of plenty of fresh air, and no other people within 150 feet or more.

I guess we’re doing ok.

But it’s looking to me like we may not see much of the Chesapeake on this trip, either. We missed it in 2016 because of my eye, and we may just fly through this year due to Covid-19. That’ll be a disappointment, but it sets us up for a future cruise, too.

Looking for that silver lining!

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We’re fine, really!


Sionna is in St. Augustine, FL. It’s a pretty neat city, however the internet service is – well – Weird.

Sometimes it works. Sometimes it LOOKS like it’s working, but things disappear. Sometimes they disappear right away, and sometimes they stay for long enough to fool you, and THEN they run for the woods.

And photos don’t upload. So it’s kinda a boring blogpost this time.

If you’re following along (and there are still a loyal few who are, thank you!) we just wanted to say we’re fine, we’re being careful of ourselves and others (we canceled all the visits with friends we’d planned for this stop – just didn’t feel right) and will likely be underway again on Thursday, headed north.

It’s an odd world to live in right now, that much is certain. Y’all be good to each other and yourselves, and we’ll do the same!

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Waiting it out again in Vero Beach


It’s blowing. Again. Just for curiosity we tuned in the the local reports of marine weather, and sure enough, winds at Vero Beach are 15-20 mph, gusting to 35.

So we’re glad we’re tucked in here for a couple days, chillin’ out, cooking (Nicki made bread, and I did an experimental dish using sweet potato and Cristophene. Call it “Scalloped Christophene & Sweet Potato” and you’ll have the idea.

What’s that, you don’t know what Christophene is? Poor you! It’s a Caribbean/Mexican veggie, considered a squash. In Mexico they call it Chayote Squash. Crispy-crunchy fresh, still a bit of tooth cooked, not a lot of flavor of it’s own but fun to eat, and no waste – the single seed is eaten along with the rest, and you needn’t peal it, plus they keep very well un-refrigerated on the boat.

And we have neighbors, too. In Vero Beach, you share moorings.

In this case, we’re sharing with the boat Katy, and wonder-of-wonders, they’re from Maine too!

Steve & Judy have been fine company – we handed over some fresh bread, and Judy sent over some of her wicked (as we say in Maine) Lentil curry. And to make the day complete, I pulled the plug in the bottom of Sionna and


Well no, actually I didn’t. But it’s ratings week on the blog, and since we don’t have any pictures of me cavorting nearly naked in the surf like most sailing blogs, I thought just a wee bit of drama induction would help us in the ratings. And I really did pull the plug in the bottom. Our speed log sensor is mounted through the belly, and it stopped working on our way up here Thursday, so I pulled it out to clean it, replacing it with the replacement plug provided for the purpose. We’ve never pulled it when we were in the water, so I wasn’t actually sure how much water would come in during the exchange, but it turns out the maker thought of that, and there’s a little valve-thingy in the hole that stops all but a trickle of water while you do the deed. Total anti-climax, but a relief to we-who-hate-sinking. And now we should have a speed/distance log again.

Plus some mighty good lentils and bread.

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